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The Doors - The Soft Parade

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The Soft Parade

The Doors

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The rock’n’roll history books have often considered The Soft Parade to be The Doors’ worst album. Fifty years after its release on the 18th of July 1969, a re-evaluation of the Californians’ fourth opus establishes itself. Exactly a year after Waiting for the Sun, The Doors changed their modus operandi with an album which was viscerally less rock’n’roll. Unmanageable, completely obsessed with his poetry, more and more dependant on alcohol and always seemingly on the brink of leaving the band (held back in extremis by the keyboard player Ray Manzarek), Jim Morrison only wrote half of the tracks on this album. The guitarist Robbie Krieger stepped up to the mark and took the helm writing-wise, as well as developing the band’s instrumentation. 

Headed by Paul Harris, brass and strings make an unexpected appearance in the band’s sound. Notes of jazz dilute the pure rock sound and bring a more bluesy texture, as well as some pop and even some lounge-style sequences. An eclectic mix which is slightly confusing to begin with, but it stops The Doors’ unique singularity from dwindling. The melodies on The Soft Parade are peraps not of the same calibre as those on the three previous albums, but at an era when the competition was also experimenting with some stranger sounds, Jim Morrison, Ray Manzarek, Robby Krieger and John Densmore prove that they too can steer rock music into uncharted territories. © Max Dembo/Qobuz

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The Soft Parade

The Doors

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1
Tell All the People
00:03:20

Paul Harris, Orchestral Arranger - Bruce Botnick, Engineer - Harvey Brooks, Bass Guitar - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals - Ray Manzarek, Keyboards - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Writer, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

2
Touch Me
00:03:12

Paul Harris, Orchestral Arranger - Bruce Botnick, Engineer - Harvey Brooks, Bass Guitar - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals - Ray Manzarek, Harpsichord, Keyboards - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Writer, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Curtis Amy, Solo Saxophone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

3
Shaman's Blues
00:04:48

Bruce Botnick, Engineer - Harvey Brooks, Bass Guitar - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals, Writer - Ray Manzarek, Keyboards, Electric Piano - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

4
Do It
00:03:08

Bruce Botnick, Engineer - Harvey Brooks, Bass Guitar - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals, Writer - Ray Manzarek, Keyboards, Hammond Organ - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Writer, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

5
Easy Ride
00:02:43

Bruce Botnick, Engineer - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums, Hand Clap - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals, Writer, Hand Clap - Ray Manzarek, Keyboards - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas - Douglass Lubahn, Bass Guitar

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

6
Wild Child
00:02:36

Bruce Botnick, Engineer - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals, Writer - Ray Manzarek, Keyboards, Hammond Organ - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas - Douglass Lubahn, Bass Guitar

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

7
Runnin' Blue
00:02:27

Paul Harris, Orchestral Arranger - Bruce Botnick, Engineer - Harvey Brooks, Bass Guitar - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals - Ray Manzarek, Keyboards - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Lead Vocals, Writer, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas - Jimmy Buchanan, Fiddle

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

8
Wishful Sinful
00:02:58

Paul Harris, Orchestral Arranger - Bruce Botnick, Engineer - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals - Ray Manzarek, Keyboards - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Writer, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Champ Webb, Horn - Reinol Andino, Congas - Douglass Lubahn, Bass Guitar

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

9
The Soft Parade
00:08:35

Bruce Botnick, Engineer - Harvey Brooks, Bass Guitar - JOHN DENSMORE, Drums - Jim Morrison, Percussion, Tambourine, Backing Vocals, Lead Vocals, Writer - Ray Manzarek, Harpsichord, Keyboards, Hammond Organ, Electric Piano - The Doors, MainArtist - Robby Krieger, Lead Guitar - George Bohanan, Solo Trombone - Paul A. Rothchild, Producer - Jesse McReynolds, Additional Mandolin - Reinol Andino, Congas

1969 Elektra Records 2012 Elektra Records

Album Description

The rock’n’roll history books have often considered The Soft Parade to be The Doors’ worst album. Fifty years after its release on the 18th of July 1969, a re-evaluation of the Californians’ fourth opus establishes itself. Exactly a year after Waiting for the Sun, The Doors changed their modus operandi with an album which was viscerally less rock’n’roll. Unmanageable, completely obsessed with his poetry, more and more dependant on alcohol and always seemingly on the brink of leaving the band (held back in extremis by the keyboard player Ray Manzarek), Jim Morrison only wrote half of the tracks on this album. The guitarist Robbie Krieger stepped up to the mark and took the helm writing-wise, as well as developing the band’s instrumentation. 

Headed by Paul Harris, brass and strings make an unexpected appearance in the band’s sound. Notes of jazz dilute the pure rock sound and bring a more bluesy texture, as well as some pop and even some lounge-style sequences. An eclectic mix which is slightly confusing to begin with, but it stops The Doors’ unique singularity from dwindling. The melodies on The Soft Parade are peraps not of the same calibre as those on the three previous albums, but at an era when the competition was also experimenting with some stranger sounds, Jim Morrison, Ray Manzarek, Robby Krieger and John Densmore prove that they too can steer rock music into uncharted territories. © Max Dembo/Qobuz

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